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Found 6 results

  1. Disrupting How Progressivism Works in America Regular Progressivism as a process of political change in America (baby steps) rarely fails, but it's slow. As shown below, there is a tonic. The jig can get blown when a Black Swan (say, a wildcard like President Trump) disrupts the ongoing progress of the ideological-political conveyor belt. The result is that, in panic, the "Progressives" who are progressing a specific agenda will freak and show their cards way too early. It's the paranoia of a liar who loses the attention of his target and thinks that means he's been busted. Here's how it works. 1. The Progressives decide on an unpopular position they want to ram down the throats of everyone, which means they get the power to do that and others not only have to take it, they have to pay for it. For example, let's say they wanted the US government to pay for the health care of illegal aliens. They know few people want that, so they first have to put in a foundation and dress it up to make it sound reasonable, even the opposite. Then, from a position of power, present the foundation to the public. President Obama did this with Obamacare. 2. After their "foundation ploy" is out in the open, they fish for displays by the opposition--they actually goad the opposition to get reactions. That way they can bash the opposition with trigger words/phrases and accusations about violating procedures of decency, yada yada yada--and they have prepared all this in advance. For example, in September 2009, Representative Joe Wilson from South Carolina gave President Obama a gift when he yelled out in Congress, "You lie!" to Obama's claim that no health care benefits would be given to illegal aliens. Obama had been goading the opposition in his speech to the joint session of Congress and practically daring anyone from the opposition to say anything. Just listen to the booing-like reactions every time he said the opposition was getting it all wrong. Obama's smirk after Wilson yelled that "you lie" comment said it all, though. You can almost see him think, Ha! That worked better than I expected. Then he recovered his "serious" demeanor and went on to claim that no federal funds would pay for abortions (but that's a different issue he was ramming down people's throat using this same system, double dipping so to speak). In this post, I will only stay with the issue of illegal aliens getting US taxes in the form of free health care for the sake of making the process very easy to understand. 2. KABOOM! See the headlines at the time. The condescension and tut-tut-tutting from Progressives was as thick as a ton of cowpiles. The Progressives lived off the fallout (to that and the general wave it created) without any serious pushback for several years. Hell, ripples even extended into the next administration when McCain stopped Obamacare from being repealed in the Senate. 3. But President Trump happened, their Queen designate was not crowned, and the Progressives not only lost their power, they lost their bearings. I don't need to illustrate that. We all know what happened. The result is that their timing on the true intended outcomes of their different policy agendas went seriously haywire and they have been running around in circles ever since. 4. Now they have a shot to regain their power with another election, but they have lost all sense of how their own system works policy-wise, in other words, it is grounded on selling a bait-and-switch through patience, not hysteria or brute force. (Apropos, brute force is not out of the picture, though. It only comes in at the end if they get real power, not "checked and balanced" power. Then they start the mass killings few of them, only the insiders, realize is coming. See the several major leftie nations where mass graves exist as examples.) The video below is a perfect example of what happens when someone disrupts the Progressive process in a major way. Don't forget, Obama claimed there is no way the US will pay for the health care of illegal aliens, right? Just look. Every goddam one of those Democrats on the first night of the primary debates for the 2020 election raised their hand saying they wanted illegal aliens to get US taxes in the form of free health care. The truth is, even for Obama back then, that is what they wanted all along. The rest was bait. But they screwed up. They just gave President Trump and other Republicans running in 2020 a hell of an image for campaign ads. All because they lost their marbles when someone threw a monkeywrench in the gears of the conveyor belt they were on. They were doing the long con and got stalled by an unexpected event. Now, in panic, thinking they've been busted anyway, they are unmasking themselves on the long con thinking this is how they are going to get their power back. Jeez... Talk about discombobulated... I thought they were better as opponents... The conclusion? We need more Black Swans. We need more disruptive, but productive, people like President Trump. The Progressives will not stop building sandcastles of worship to lousy gods to mold with cement, but a good strong wave before the cement dries collapses them every time. Michael
  2. I hear that the DNC has arranged for a large number of women who are mothers of young black men shot by police to appear at the convention. The idea is to reinforce the false narrative that police are racist and killing young black men in disproportionate numbers. One of the women is the mother of Michael Brown, who Eric Holder's Justice department reluctantly concluded was trying to kill the police officer who had to shoot him out of self-defense. That they would include her tells me that they have reached a high level of confidence that they are no longer bound by the truth or any facts in their push to incite fear and hatred for their political ends. This goes so far beyond cheap pandering for the black vote. It is identity politics being placed ahead of the very life our culture. Where did we lose the commonsense it takes to say, "Hey, that's racist and extremely dangerous"? Progressives have sanctioned Black Lives Matters even after the organization held marches where the chants were calls to kill cops. Representatives of this group have gone, by invitation, to the white house, have met with Hillary, and will be at the Democratic Convention. And now we have had two separate incidents where cops were hunted down and killed by angry, young black men. This is the ugly dead end of identity politics. It is Hillary Clinton willing to ignore the incendiary climate her calls for policing the police are having when the temperature has already reached the point where body bags are being filled.
  3. The thread title was suggested (sort of) by Michael. I emailed him and asked about promoting my books on OL. He chided me for being shy about it. Thank you, Michael. Here's the story: I've wanted, especially as I get older, to make some kind of effort towards changing our country's political trajectory. Each time someone came up with an idea, like Mark Levin's Liberty Amendments (for the constitution), or Charles Murray's civil disobedience schemes, or Thomas Wood's ideas on State Nullification, I'd get excited... for a short time. I'd think, "Yes! Finally, a way to turn things around for a while and give rationality time to catch up." But, in each case, and in every other direction I've looked with fond, but unrealistic hopes, reality would return. For a while I was ready to devote my remaining years to creating a professional, multi-year campaign to put through a series of constitutional amendments. That was my last this-will-get-us-right scheme, but after a fair amount of planning, I got to where I looked at the constitutions of some of the individual states, to see what they required to be able to pass an amendment to the US constitution (one that hadn't originated with the US Congress), and decided that was a non-starter. I gave it up and decided there are no quick fixes. The only path to the kind of change we want is education. A people get the government they deserve and by "deserve" I refer to their level of understanding of political principles. So, I decided to write a series of books intended to present the basic principles that should be understood by a free people. I'm calling them "Wolfer's Primer on..." and the first one takes apart progressivism: Wolfer's Primer on Progressivism. When I started a serious study of progressivism I was stunned at how much I didn't know. Anyway, that book has been written. It is short and to the point (about 80 pages) and available on Amazon.com as either a Kindle eBook, or a paperback. I kept the prices very, very low. Last week I finished all of the little details involved in putting my second book up on Amazon.com. It is "Wolfer's Primer on The Nature of Government". You and I both know about how drastically different the average person's understanding of what government should be and should do is from the Objectivist position. This book is even shorter - about 50 pages (and equally inexpensive). I'll be writing a couple more. My next one will be a little more involved. It will be on Human Nature. After that, my plan is for a book on Liberty - the idea being to paint an attractive word picture of how exciting and benevolent life would be like when living in a free country. Most people alive today don't even know how exciting things are when the economic growth rate is 7 or 8 percent. They have never even experienced a robust economy, much less what it would be like under a system built on individual rights. As a series, I hope they will show the massive level of deception involved in progressivism, and what government is by its very nature, and what human nature is (because that sets the foundation and direction of all the social sciences), and a vision of what life as a free people could be. I'm far from a literate writer and the books are far from eloquent, but I hope they support the key principles in a solid way. I'll get them written and up on the internet, but how to mass market them is still a project I'm unclear on. (More study... sigh) Any ideas on mass marketing would be gratefully received.
  4. All indications are that shady businessman Terry McAuliffe (D) will win the Virginia governorship today, and with his incoming administration's tie-breaking vote, swing the 50-50 Virginia Senate under the control of the Democratic Party. Here's what a CNN contributor found so noxious about Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli: "Tea party favorite and self-described "Second Amendment-supporting Christian right-to-life home-school dad," Cuccinelli has built a political career on a foundation of strident social conservatism. Proclaiming "homosexuality is wrong," supporting abstinence-only sex education and devoting himself to abortion restrictions as a matter of faith and law, Cuccinelli has been eager to use political office to advance an ideological agenda." http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/04/opinion/avlon-virginia-cuccinelli/index.html?hpt=hp_c2 These words could just as well have been written by several of our resident Virginian commenters who regularly warn about the imminent tyrannical theocracy waiting to be unleashed. Some of them may be out at the polls voting for McAuliffe at this moment, nodding approvingly as they witness their state making the historic transition from red to blue. I'll sum up in one word why I feel their laser-like focus on trending social issues is destructive: prioritization. I disagree with every one of Cuccinelli's social positions grieved about in the CNN passage above. So, not being a partisan voter, why do I feel the Turn-Virginia-Blue movement is so fundamentally misguided? Not coincidentally, the social issues that are getting the most attention are the lowest practical priority issues in the election. This is exactly what progressives want to drown out the debate: feel-good, quick-fix social causes that make next to no practical difference in real quality of life. Cuccinelli can't overturn Roe v. Wade or impose harsh new abortion restrictions, so why is it even part of the discussion? Abstinence-only sex education - who cares? Parents should be educating their children about sex, not the schools, in any event. And with apologies to my gay friends, though I support gay marriage, it is not even close to being the overriding social issue of our time. Only economic policies can account for the dramatic swings in living quality that we see from state to state. Nobody I've encountered disputes that Republican-controlled Virginia is a lovely, thriving place in which to live, which unfortunately, is part of the problem. The state has enviable jobs creation, relatively low taxes, tolerant people, and low levels of corruption. This has attracted an influx in progressive/liberal migration from the Northeast United States and nearby DC and Maryland, where taxes are high, jobs are fewer, and the cost-of-living is perpetually skyrocketing. These progressive migrants choose to live in Virginia, then vote to recreate it in the progressive image, furiously voting out every "Tea Bagger Republican" that appears on their radar. Like a swarm of locusts moving from field to field, they reflexively rage and rally against the political traditions that made their destination states so successful in the first place. Why let the perfect be the enemy of the good? If it isn't broken, don't fix it.
  5. One of the strangest progressive memes of the past few years has got to be the following, which is currently making the rounds on social media: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/10/10/1141724/-Walmart-fuels-inequality-epidemic-taking-advantage-of-our-safety-net http://activism.thenation.com/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=11116&tag=twitter Stripping away the many superfluous adjectives, the argument goes something like this: - Walmart pays low wages and limited healthcare benefits to many of its employees - Some of the employees are eligible for food stamps and Medicaid because of their low compensation. - Therefore, Walmart is using social safety nets as an integral part of its business model (Walmart = Welfare Queen) There are too many logical fallacies wrapped into this argument to give proper treatment in one post. Aside from the dubious employment-as-exploitation framework upon which the argument rests, it is uniformly assumed that Walmart's low-wage workers are welfare recipients because of the widely accepted progressive truism that "it's impossible to live on such wages." One problem with this assumption - and with the broader category of "living wage" arguments - is that many low-wage workers are in fact living in households with pooled resources. A few obvious complicating factors in the analysis are marriage, roommates, teenagers living with parents, and other sources of income. For the argument to carry any semblance of merit, one must further assume that Walmart wages are in fact adjusted downward in proportion to the availability of government programs like food stamps and Medicaid rather than being based on competitive market conditions. To my knowledge, there is no evidence whatsoever to support this conclusion, nor is such a hypothesis even testable in the first place.
  6. A progressive writer for Slate by the name of Matt Yglesias (formerly associated with the Center for American Progress, and apparently a big deal in that community) posted a statement to his Twitter account yesterday that I found interesting. Though I don’t follow Yglesias on Twitter and had not heard of him before, the post came to my attention when it was retweeted by a buffoonish progressive blogger I do follow for the sole purpose of publicly shaming him in what can be best analogized as a regular pheasant hunt on the grounds of my digital estate. Yglesias’s tweet, most likely written in response to the National Spelling Bee coverage, was as follows: “English’s inordinately difficult spelling makes for entertaining contests, but it’s horrible for social mobility. Reform is needed.” Presumably, Yglesias’s argument goes something like this: poor people don’t have the same opportunities to learn spelling as the other classes; therefore, English spelling rules function as barriers to social blending and must be overhauled. Putting aside the obvious practical concerns surrounding such an action (philosopher kings don't concern themselves with such matters), Yglesias’s view of English as a top-down control mechanism – a tinker’s tool for producing desirable social outcomes – runs counter to what Hayekians might point to as the emergent nature of language. We don't know if Yglesias would recommend the creation of such a body, but there is no Central Authority that controls spelling or vocabulary for all of society. Language is, and has been for centuries, shaped by each one of us, through usage, every day. Literally anyone can invent a word or adopt a new spelling at any time, and if enough people use it, it becomes a part of our shared means of communication - a part of our culture and social norms. It’s indicative of the core temperamental differences between libertarians and progressives that my take on spelling is the polar opposite of Yglesias’s. Whereas Yglesias sees spelling as a tool of oppression beating down the poor, I view it as a great equalizing opportunity *for anyone willing to put in the effort.* Spelling is nothing more than a system of rules and exceptions learned through experience, memorization, and practice. Unlike in the past, when books were true rarities affordable only by the elite, the entirety of the English language is now directly accessible to anyone with a library, book store, or computer. With a simple grammar book and a bit of practice, there is nothing preventing the poorest of the poor from learning to express themselves every bit as eloquently as the richest of the rich. Compare the written word to mansions, luxury cars, finely tailored clothing, and other social status symbols long beyond the grasp of all but the super wealthy. Or compare it to exclusionary factors not so easily changed, such as accent, mannerisms, or physical appearance. If language is a barrier for the lower classes, what a cheap and accessible barrier it is, and once you've climbed over that initial hurdle, nobody can rightly tell the prince from the pauper on the other side.